Albert Berdini of Sarteano
|Blessed Albert Berdini, O.F.M.|
|"King of Preachers"|
Sarteano, Province of Siena, Italy
|Died||15 August 1450
|Honored in||Order of Friars Minor|
Blessed Albert Berdini, O.F.M., (also known as Albert of Sarteano) was a Franciscan friar and preacher, born in 1385 in the town of Sarteano, which lies in the Province of Siena in the Tuscan region of Italy. He entered the Order of Friars Minor Conventuals in 1405. Later, however, he was drawn by the reform of St. Bernardine of Siena, whose fame was spreading throughout Italy. Berdini became desirous of following more strictly the Rule of St. Francis which Bernardine was promoting and he transferred over to the Observant Friars Minor, becoming one of the companions of the great Apostle of the Holy Name of Jesus.
Under the masterful guidance of Bernardine, Berdini's fame as an orator became so renowned that he was commonly known as the "King of Preachers" (Rex Praedicatorum).
Pope Eugene IV commissioned him as an apostolic delegate for Ethiopia, India, Egypt and Jerusalem. In 1439 Berdini was sent by the Pope to deliver a letter to the Coptic Church in Egypt, so that it could participate in the Council of Florence and thus take part in the ongoing efforts to unite all Christian churches. He returned to Italy on 26 August 1441 with four Coptic bishops, although eventually the efforts at reunion proved fruitless.
He was elected as Vicar General of the Order of Friars Minor, in which post he served 1442-1443 as the Acting Minister General due to the death of the Minister General, until the election of a new Minister General the following year.
Albert died in Milan, Italy, on 15 August 1450.
Though the title of Blessed has always been accorded to Albert of Sarteano, principally on account of the fact, as one of the earlier chroniclers of the Order tell us, of the numerous miracles he worked after his death at Milan, his cultus has never been explicitly approved by the Catholic Church. Active steps have, however, been taken for his formal beatification.
Albert, along with his teacher, Bernardine, is considered among the four great pillars of the Observant reform within the Order of Friars Minor.
- Catholic Encyclopedia
- David B. Quinn, Cecil H. Clough, Paul Edward Hedley Hair The European Outthrust and Encounter: The First Phase, c. 1400-c. 1700 Liverpool University Press, 1994 ISBN 0-85323-229-6
- Michael Robson, O.F.M. Conv. The Franciscans in the Middle Ages The Boydell Press, 2006 ISBN 1-84383-221-6
- Richard C. Trexler The journey of the Magi: meanings in history of a Christian story Princeton University Press, 1997 ISBN 0-691-01126-5